Practical Ecommerce

March Survey Results: Ecommerce Merchants Not Prepared for Mobile

The use of mobile devices for Internet access is growing rapidly. This got us wondering how our readers are responding to the mobile boom, and how many ecommerce firms are truly prepared to meet the challenges of mobile commerce. Survey results indicate that practically everyone uses mobile devices, and most believe that mobile is the future of ecommerce. But, it also showed that most merchants are vastly unprepared.

The March 2010 survey asked four questions about mobile commerce, with a comment section for each response. Readers who completed the survey, and then provided us with their names and email addresses, were automatically entered in a contest to win a $25 Amazon gift certificate. The March contest winner, chosen by a random number generator, was Caroline of the U.K-based company, TRedz.

Most Everyone Believes Mobile is Coming

Our survey asked if respondents believed that mobile commerce will continue to grow and will materially affect their businesses. More than 80 percent of respondents said yes, but 17.4 percent think mobile is not likely to affect their businesses, and one person was not sure.

One respondent, identified as an ecommerce developer, said “Our clients are already asking about mobile commerce, and the service providers we work with are beginning to provide solutions to help us expand our service set to mobile clientele.”

Other comments ranged from “No. Our target market is primarily older adults,” to “Mobile commerce will rule the world.”

Chart: Which best describes your views on mobile commerce?

Chart: Which best describes your views on mobile commerce?

The Majority Are Not Prepared for Mobile

When asked to describe their websites relative to mobile devices, 71.7 percent said their sites are not optimized for mobile devices and/or browsers, and do not have a mobile app. 21.7 percent said their sites are optimized for mobile devices, and 2.2 percent have their own mobile app.

Some people said they are working on getting their sites up to speed, with comments such as “Mobile optimization is on our to-do list for this year” being a typical response.

Chart: Which best describes your website relative to mobile devices?

Chart: Which best describes your website relative to mobile devices?

Most Are Using Mobile Web Devices

More than three-quarters of respondents answered “yes” when asked if they use an iPhone, Blackberry, or other mobile web device. However, another 23.9 percent said they do not use mobile devices, with one respondent commenting, “I personally do not use an iPhone or other mobile devices, but I know my customers do.”

Chart: Do you use an iPhone, Blackberry or other mobile web device?

Chart: Do you use an iPhone, Blackberry or other mobile web device?

Who Took the Survey?

When asked to describe the type of businesses they are in, 43.5 percent said they represent an ecommerce company; 23.9 percent are developers, designers or programmers; and 4.3 percent represent a software or SaaS company, or other type of vendor to ecommerce merchants. 28.3 percent said they are in some sort of “Other'” business, ranging from career consulting to a mail order business.

Chart: Which best describes you or your business?

Chart: Which best describes you or your business?

Kate Monteith

Kate Monteith

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  1. Louis Camassa April 7, 2010 Reply

    Mobile is definitely already here-check your Analytics account to see how many visitors coming to your website are on mobile platforms.

  2. Pamela Hazelton April 7, 2010 Reply

    I don’t usually lend lots of weight to focus surveys, but these numbers seem to be within the realm of what I’ve thought. In fact, I bet that more than 80% of sites aren’t yet optimize.

  3. AntonySwans April 9, 2010 Reply

    The number of mobile Web users is predicted to exceed 1 billion people in 2010. So, if mobile optimization is on to-do list for this year, there’s a good chance to lose a big part of your potential audience. If you are interested in attracting people to your website, it’s essential to make it mobile friendly, as soon as possible.